Parallel Construction Reviews (Executive Office for United States Attorneys)

Avinash Samarth filed this request with the Department of Justice, National Security Division of the United States of America.
Tracking # FOIA-2014-03872
Est. Completion None
Status
No Responsive Documents

Communications

From: Avinash Samarth

To Whom It May Concern:

This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby request the following records:

In August 2013, Reuters reported that the DEA's Special Operations Division distributes tips from NSA surveillances to federal, state, and local law enforcement agents for use in their domestic criminal investigations. See http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/08/05/us-dea-sod-idUSBRE97409R20130805.

Identifying which criminal prosecutions involved those tips is critical to our system of justice. Myriad judges, prosecutors, and defense attorneys have stressed that without knowing whether an investigation involved NSA surveillance, defendants might be shielded from what they are legally entitled to: exculpatory evidence and the opportunity to challenge likely-unconstitutional surveillance deployed in their cases. Id.; see also Brady v. Maryland, 373 U.S. 83, 87 (1963); Klayman v. Obama, No. 13–0881(RJL), 2013 WL 6598728 (D.D.C. Dec. 16, 2013).

Moreover, in failing to disclose this information, the Government circumvents Congress's wish that a defendant be on notice when NSA surveillance is involved in his criminal prosecution. 50 U.S.C. § 1806.

Four methods of sharing intelligence-community information with the DEA are listed in a January 2014 FOIA production by the DEA. The first involves CIPA, the second involves a Supreme Court case from 1938 called "Scher v. United States," the third involves FISA, and the fourth is termed "parallel construction." See January 2014 DEA FOIA Production, https://muckrock.s3.amazonaws.com/foia_files/1-23-14_MR6434_RES_ID13-00541-F_1.pdf.

That FOIA production contains documents noting that: “The Government keeps close records of the use of these techniques to ensure that it can be proved to judges and/or oversight personnel from Congress or the administration that the defendant is was not unlawfully or unconstitutionally disadvantaged by these techniques.” Id. at 33, 114.

I hereby request:

(1) Copies of those "close records";

(2) Records identifying the number of cases in which "parallel construction" was used and classified information was not disclosed to the defendant;

(3) Records identifying the number of cases in which "parallel construction" was used and classified information was disclosed to the defendant;

(4) Records identifying the number of cases in which the CIPA method was used and classified information was not disclosed to the defendant;

(5) Records identifying the number of cases in which the CIPA method was used and classified information was disclosed to the defendant;

(6) Records identifying the number of cases in which Scher v. United States was relied upon to share intelligence-community information with the DEA and that information was not disclosed to the defendant;

(7) Records identifying the number of cases in which Scher v. United States was relied upon to share intelligence-community information with the DEA and that information was disclosed to the defendant.

I also request that, if appropriate, fees be waived as I believe this request is in the public interest. The requested documents will be made available to the general public free of charge as part of the public information service at MuckRock.com, processed by a representative of the news media/press and is made in the process of news gathering and not for commercial usage.

In the event that fees cannot be waived, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

Avinash Samarth

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Aug. 21, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Aug. 21, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Aug. 21, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Aug. 21, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Aug. 21, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Aug. 21, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Aug. 21, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Aug. 21, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Aug. 21, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Aug. 21, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thanks for your help, and let me know if further clarification is needed.

From: Executive Office for United States Attorneys

An acknowledgement letter, stating the request is being processed.

From: USAEO-FOIA Requests

Here's the response we sent September 29, 2014. Please contact National Security Division for a direct response to you.

From: MuckRock

To Whom It May Concern:

This FOIA request has been forwarded to your office for processing. Confirmation of receipt and an estimated date of completion would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you.

From: Gleaves, Lani (NSD)

Martin Peck
MuckRock News
DEPT MR 21358
P.O. Box 55819
Boston, MA 02205

Dear Mr. Peck:

This is in reference to your email dated November 18, 2015, seeking “Four methods of sharing intelligence-community information with the DEA are listed in a January 2014 FOIA production by the DEA. The first involves CIPA, the second involves a Supreme Court case from 1938 called "Scher v. United States," the third involves FISA, and the fourth is termed "parallel construction:

(1) Copies of those "close records";

(2) Records identifying the number of cases in which "parallel construction" was used and classified information was not disclosed to the defendant;

(3) Records identifying the number of cases in which "parallel construction" was used and classified information was disclosed to the defendant;

(4) Records identifying the number of cases in which the CIPA method was used and classified information was not disclosed to the defendant;

(5) Records identifying the number of cases in which the CIPA method was used and classified information was disclosed to the defendant;

(6) Records identifying the number of cases in which Scher v. United States was relied upon to share intelligence-community information with the DEA and that information was not disclosed to the defendant;

(7) Records identifying the number of cases in which Scher v. United States was relied upon to share intelligence-community information with the DEA and that information was disclosed to the defendant.”

Your FOIA request was not received in the National Security FOIA Office. NSD does not use the file number that you indicated in your email.

Sincerely,
Arnetta Mallory
Arnetta Mallory
Government Information Specialist

From: MuckRock

To Whom It May Concern:

Please confirm receipt of the attached FOIA request, which was forwarded to your office for processing by the Executive Office for U.S. Attorneys.

Thank you.

From: Gleaves, Lani (NSD)

Avinash Samarth
MuckRock News
DEPT MR 11165
P.O. Box 55819
Boston, MA 02205-5819

Dear Ms. Samarth:

This is in reference to your email dated November 23, 2015, pertaining to “the DEA's Special Operations Division distributes tips from NSA surveillances to federal, state, and local law enforcement agents for use in their domestic criminal investigations, (1) Copies of those "close records"; (2) Records identifying the number of cases in which "parallel construction" was used and classified information was not disclosed to the defendant; (3) Records identifying the number of cases in which "parallel construction" was used and classified information was disclosed to the defendant; (4) Records identifying the number of cases in which the CIPA method was used and classified information was not disclosed to the defendant; (5) Records identifying the number of cases in which the CIPA method was used and classified information was disclosed to the defendant; (6) Records identifying the number of cases in which Scher v. United States was relied upon to share intelligence-community information with the DEA and that information was not disclosed to the defendant; (7) Records identifying the number of cases in which Scher v. United States was relied upon to share intelligence-community information with the DEA and that information was disclosed to the defendant.” Our FOIA office received your Freedom of Information request on November 23, 2015.
Created by the reauthorization of the USA PATRIOT Act in March 2006, the National Security Division (NSD) formally began operations on October 2, 2006. The NSD consolidated the national security components of the Department of Justice under a new Assistant Attorney General (the AAG for National Security). These components included the Office of Intelligence Policy and Review (now the Office of Intelligence) and the Criminal Division's Counterterrorism and Counterespionage Sections. The NSD also includes a new Law and Policy office responsible for providing legal assistance and for formulating legislative initiatives on matters related to national security law and policy. These organizational changes reinforce the Department’s efforts to prevent terrorism and other threats to national security. In addition, the AAG for National Security acts as the Department's liaison with the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of Defense, and other intelligence community agencies in order to improve coordination against terrorism and other threats to national security.

For your information, Congress excluded three discrete categories of law enforcement and national security records from the requirements of the FOIA. See 5 U.S.C. § 552(c) (2006 & Supp. IV (2010). This response is limited to those records that are subject to the requirements of the FOIA. This is a standard notification that is given to all our requesters and should not be taken as an indication that excluded records do, or do not, exist.

We regret to inform you that we cannot comply to your request. NSD did not receive your request dated August 21, 2014. We do not use FOIA numbers beginning with FOIA-2014-03872. Therefore, your file is hereby administratively closed in the National Security Division.

If you are not satisfied with my response to your request, you may administratively appeal by writing to the Director, Office of Information Policy, United States Department of Justice, Suite 11050, 1425 New York Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20530-0001, or you may submit an appeal through OIP's eFOIA portal at http://www.justice.gov/oip/efoia-portal.html. Your appeal must be postmarked or transmitted electronically within sixty days from the date of this letter. If you submit your appeal by mail, both the letter and the envelope should be clearly marked "Freedom of Information Act Appeal."

Sincerely,

Arnetta Mallory
Arnetta Mallory
Government Information Specialist

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